Kegels are fabulous, but they aren’t necessary for everyone. If your pelvic floor muscles are already tight, you don’t need to do the exercises.
Kegel exercises are specific workouts to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles. They also impact your rectum, bladder, small intestine, and the muscles supporting your uterus. Kegels not only keep them in shape, but they can also prevent bladder leaks and accidentally passing gas. They might even make your orgasms better.
Reasons to Do Kegel Exercises
You might not even be aware of your pelvic floor muscles when they are functioning normally. However, they may begin to weaken as you age. You now run the risk of developing a condition known as pelvic organ prolapse (POP). Your pelvic organs essentially begin to droop. They could exit or enter your vagina. Your vaginal tissues may begin to protrude from your body after a hysterectomy. Other risk factors for POP include:
- Pregnancy and vaginal delivery
- Frequent sneezing, coughing or laughing
- Hysterectomy, C-section, or surgery in the pelvic area
Kegel exercises may be popular among women, but they are also great for men. If you are looking for a man looking to strengthen your pelvic muscles, you could also benefit from kegel exercises. These muscles influence sexual function and support your bladder and bowel. If you dribble after you urinate, or struggle with bladder or bowel incontinence, Kegels can be helpful.
How to Do Kegels
Kegel exercises are a simple way to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. These muscles support the uterus, bladder, and rectum, and they can weaken over time due to pregnancy, childbirth, surgery, aging, or other factors. Kegel exercises can help to reduce incontinence and improve sexual function. To do a Kegel exercise, squeeze the muscles that you use to stop the flow of urine. Hold for 10 seconds, then relax for 10 seconds. Repeat this 10 times. You can do Kegel exercises anywhere and at any time, and no one will know that you are doing them. For best results, aim for three sets of 10 repetitions per day.
Try contracting and then relaxing your pelvic floor muscles for three seconds. Repeat this procedure ten times to complete a set. If you can’t complete 10, try as many as you can and increase gradually. Work your way up to performing one set of ten Kegels twice or three times daily.
In a few weeks or months, most women who routinely perform Kegels see results. They include less urine leaks and better orgasms. Talk to your doctor about different therapies if you’re still worried about a prolapse or don’t think your symptoms are going better. Kegels aren’t harmful, and you could incorporate them into your everyday routine.
When to See a Doctor
If you’re having a hard time performing Kegels, ask for assistance. Your doctor can advise on how to perform them correctly. Other helpful tools include:
You can insert these weights into your vagina. The goal is to use your pelvic muscle contractions to hold them in place.
This works for both men and women. A doctor inserts a pressure sensor into your vagina or rectum. You then need to squeeze and relax your pelvic floor muscles. The monitor evaluates your activity.
Caution When Doing Kegels
After performing Kegel exercises, you shouldn’t experience any pain or discomfort. If your back or abdomen hurts, you’re not performing them correctly. Always remember that your abdomen, back, buttocks, and side muscles should remain relaxed even while you tighten your pelvic floor muscles.
Last, don’t overdo the kegel exercises. Overworking the muscles will make them exhausted and unable to perform their essential duties. Kegels require consistency to be effective, just as other exercises. You have to perform them daily for a minimum of 15 weeks. Any routine modifications should be discussed with your doctor.
You may be wondering, “can you do Kegels with an IUD?” There is no harm in doing Kegels if you have an IUD. It goes into your uterus and not your pelvic floor. Sometimes, the insertion or removal of an IUD tightens the pelvic floor.
If you have just had an IUD inserted, take some time to relax your muscles before doing Kegels. If you experience pain after insertion, consider seeing a pelvic rehab therapist for an assessment.
Kegels are fabulous, but they aren’t necessary for everyone. If your pelvic floor muscles are already tight, you don’t need to do the exercises. In addition, you shouldn’t attempt to contract your muscles if they are already tired. If you are considering doing kegel exercises, seek a medical opinion. Your doctor should let you know if you need to do Kegels. They will also give you tips to perform the exercises correctly.